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How the digital highway code aims to curb internet violations 

IbyIMD+ Published 8 May 2024 in Governance • 9 min read • Audio availableAudio available

UNESCO guidelines for the governance of digital platforms offer timely lessons for more effective collaboration between private companies, civil society, and governments.

When we invented cars, we regulated traffic. Yet, over 25 years since the first recognizable social media site was created, we still don’t have adequate tools to halt the spread of misinformation, disinformation, and other harmful content online – even though more people now use social media than own a car.

The consequences of this global online “Wild West” have been, at times, devastating. In Myanmar, Facebook was accused of triggering an outbreak of ethnic violence, while in India, false rumors about child kidnappers went viral on WhatsApp, leading to a spate of deadly attacks. And with more than two billion people set to vote in elections in 2024, the stakes have never been higher. An IPSOS survey of 8,000 respondents from 16 countries where ballots will be held this year found that 85% were worried about the impact of online disinformation at a time when social media platforms have become the primary source of information and news.

The internet is regulated by a…

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